11 Jun 2012

Quake hits southwest Turkey

10:28 pm on 11 June 2012

A strong earthquake has shaken southwest Turkey, damaging buildings and causing some injuries.

The 5.8 magnitude quake occurred at 3.44 pm on Sunday, centred off the coast of the Mediterranean province of Mugla, a popular destination for foreign tourists.

Local media reported that at least six people were injured after jumping from their balconies or windows in panic. Officials say a few buildings were damaged.

Residents in the tourism hub town of Fethiye, in Mugla province, told local television that the quake lasted about 30 seconds. Many people remained outside as aftershocks rocked the area.

The earthquake was felt in several Turkish provinces as well as in the city of Izmir, about 330km north of Fethiye, and in northern Cyprus. The Greek island of Rhodes also shook, officials there told Reuters.

In October last year, more than 600 people died in the eastern province of Van after a quake of 7.2 magnitude and powerful aftershocks.

In 1999, two massive earthquakes killed about 20,000 people in the country's densely populated northwest.